Van Park, PhD, MPH

Title(s)Associate Professor, Community Health Systems
SchoolSchool of Nursing
ORCID ORCID Icon0000-0001-5020-0359 Additional info
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    Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MarylandPhDHealth Policy & Management, concentration in Social and Behavioral Sciences
    University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CaliforniaMPHHealth Promotion
    University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CaliforniaBSHealth Promotion and Disease Prevention Studies
    University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CaliforniaBASociology
    Stanford University, Stanford, CaliforniaCertificate of Ethnogeriatrics
    University of California at San Francisco, San Francisco, CaliforniaPostdoctoral Fellowship in Drug Abuse Treatment and Services Research

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    Dr. Van Ta Park is an Associate Professor at UCSF, School of Nursing, Department of Community Health Systems, and teaches in the Advanced Public Health Nursing (APHN) program. Her primary research interest is to address issues related to racial and ethnic minority health and healthcare disparities, especially among Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI), through community-based participatory research. Her research areas include mental health and Alzheimer's disease and related dementias (ADRD) caregiving.

    Her current work includes a NIH/NIA R24 grant called, “Collaborative Approach for AAPI Research and Education (CARE).” The ultimate goal of CARE is to address the gap and reduce disparities in research participation among AAPI through the creation of a registry of 10,000 AAPI who are interested in participating in research. CARE is available in five languages (English, Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Korean) across four sites in California (San Francisco Bay Area, Sacramento County, Los Angeles County, and Orange County). For more information, visit https://careregistry.ucsf.edu/.

    Dr. Park also has a COVID-19 NIH/NIA administrative supplement, called, "COVID-19 Effects on the Mental and Physical Health of AAPI Survey Study (COMPASS)." The goal of COMPASS is a national survey to assess the effects of COVID-19 on AAPI. COMPASS aims to recruit 2,500 participants. COMPASS is available in five languages (English, Mandarin, Cantonese, Vietnamese, Korean). For more information, visit https://compass.ucsf.edu/.

    Dr. Park is also a Multiple Principal Investigator for a R56 NIH/NIA grant called, "Asian Cohort on Alzheimer's Disease (ACAD)." ACAD is an international collaboration with the goal of compiling a robust sample size of Asian American and Canadian subjects for Alzheimer’s disease (AD) research. Making up 6% and 10% of the US and Canadian populations respectively, Asians are the fastest growing populations in both countries yet they are underrepresented in AD research. ACAD aims to address this gap by starting with a cohort of individuals of Chinese, Korean, and Vietnamese ancestry, and later extending to other major Asian populations in both countries. For more information, visit https://acadstudy.org/.

    She is also a Site Principal Investigator for Vietnamese Insights into Cognitive Aging Program (VIP) (PI is Oanh Meyer at UCD). VIP will develop an unprecedented longitudinal study of older Vietnamese Americans to begin addressing the dearth of cognitive aging research in this population. The overall goal is to obtain preliminary estimates of mild cognitive impairment and dementia in the community and identify ADRD risk and resilience factors in this understudied group.

    She is also collaborating with a community partner, International Children Assistance Network (ICAN), on a Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) Engagement Award: Dissemination Initiative. The title of the award is, "Community Education for Vietnamese Americans on Dementia Caregiving and Advanced Care Planning."

    She also has two dissemination grants from Stanford University, School of Medicine, Stanford Precision Health for Ethnic and Racial Equity (SPHERE): (1) Disseminating SPHERE Vietnamese Research Findings to the Vietnamese American Community; and, (2) Disseminating SPHERE Korean Research Findings to the Korean American Community. She is collaborating with two community partners, ICAN and the Somang Society, respectively.

    Some of her past work included the Alzheimer’s Association’s Mentored New Investigator Research Grant to Promote Diversity (MNIRGD). The purpose of this three year grant (2015-18) was to culturally tailor a program to reduce stress and depression among Vietnamese American dementia caregivers. Dr. Ta Park also received a pilot grant (2017-18) from Stanford University, School of Medicine, Stanford Precision Health for Ethnic and Racial Equity (SPHERE) to develop and evaluate a Korean drama precision mental health curriculum among English-speaking AAPI, Vietnamese-speaking persons and Korean-speaking persons. She also had several other studies investigating the role of Korean drama to de-stigmatize mental health and help-seeking. She recently completed data collection for her pilot award from SPHERE, "Texting to be Heard in Precision Health Research – Our Vietnamese American Voice," and is currently writing the papers.

    Dr. Ta Park has previous work experience with non-profit organizations on health care policy and access for the uninsured and underinsured in Los Angeles County.

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